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tv   Nightly Business Report  PBS  September 19, 2013 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT

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on our broadcast tonight, critical minutes. tonight the fbi director tells nbc news that some of the previously reported details of the washington navy yard shooting were wrong, including how long it took for help to arrive. a new era. some stunning comments today from the new pope on topics like gays and abortion and contraception in what appears to be brand new territory for the catholic church. nbc news exclusive. the strong reaction to what the new president of iran told ann curry about nuclear weapons. tonight what he says about the prospect of a meeting with the american president. no way out for tens of thousands of tourists trapped in
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a beautiful spot that's turned ugly. with no power, no cash and no way home. "nightly news" begins now. good evening. while americans are still absorbing the blunt force of this latest mass shooting, tonight a lot of the details of what we thought we knew about the gun massacre at the washington, d.c. navy yard have changed. the new director of the fbi briefed a group of journalists today including our justice correspondent pete williams and he laid out a version of event s that differs from what we were first told and first reported. pete is with us tonight from our d.c. newsroom to start us off. hey, pete. good evening. >> reporter: brian, good evening. the fbi director james comi says video and physical evidence show nearly half an hour passed from the time the shooting started to
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the time officers found aaron alexis and fired back. the fbi director says alexis began firing shortly after 8:00 a.m. in a fourth floor hallway. comey says alexis was wandering the halls, hunting for someone to shoot with no signs of targeting anyone in particular. the first call for help didn't come until 8:21 with units then dispatched. >> we had a report on the fourth floor, a male with a shotgun, multiple shots fired. multiple people down. >> reporter: alexis continued shooting in upper hallways. comey said he fired the shotgun and then switched to the handgun. there is no evidence, the fbi says, that alexis fired from the upper floors down into the atrium below. but it wasn't until half an hour after the shooting started, the fbi says, that the first officers to enter the building found him and had him in their
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sights. >> they could hear gunfire. because of the size of the building, difficult to pin down where the gunfire was coming from. >> reporter: after walking past the dead and injured, two officers finally located alexis inside an office, hidden among a maze of cubicles. >> there was carnage everywhere in this building. absolute carnage. when officers have to go past people who are asking for help because they still have yet to neutralize the threat that weighs heavy on your mind. >> reporter: officials praised the prompt action of first responders but a navy police union says the force was understaffed preventing quicker action. a member of a u.s. capital tactical team say they were preparing to help but were order ed back. >> i asked the capital police board to do an independent fact review of the allegations to find out exactly what happened. >> reporter: also tonight michael isikoff reports the navy security clearance check for
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alexis was done by the same private firm who did the check for edward snowden who join the nsa where he stole and leaked hundreds of classified documents. >> pete williams with the latest from washington tonight. thanks. the new head of the catholic church, pope francis, has given an interview that contains comments that seem to a lot of people that seems to skip i the church ahead in time many times over. he doesn't act like pred ses source and he sure doesn't talk like a previous pope. for starters he said in the first extended published interview that the church has become, quote, obsessed with preaching abo ining about gays abortion a abortion. it goes on from there. we get our report tonight from anne thompson. [ cheers and applause ] >> reporter: in his short pa
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papacy, he's drawn thousands to the vatican and millions in rio for his first overseas trip. today it's the pope's words making headlines as he spells out his vision of the catholic church in a frank interview published in "america." we cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contra accept ty methods. he said we have to find a new balance. otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards. >> it's certainly a change in tone. it is a change in approach. we have never had a pope talk to the world like this. it is a remarkable thing. >> reporter: this pope is focused on peace, leading a prayer vigil for syria this month. highlighting the plight of immigrants. now reaching out to lapsed catholics who if they were a
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denomination would be the second largest in the country, behind practicing catholics. the pope urging the church to reach auto and listen to the reasons why. this interview followed his impromptu press conference when he said, who am i to judge when asked about a gay priest? the pope says when god looks at a gay person does he en dors the existence of this person with love or reject and condemn this person? we must always consider the person. >> there are a lot of catholics who go but feel excluded. this message he's given has given an opportunity for them to feel more welcome. >> reporter: despite the new openness, few expect radical change in the 2,000-year-old institution. >> this is not saying there will be a reversal in the church position or in church teaching. it is a shift in emphasis a lot of american catholics are welcoming. >> reporter: the interview wasn't all church business.
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the pope watched all the classic italian movies as a child and his favorite is about a young woman sold to a street performer. the pope is an opera buff. his favorites include dostoevsky and his favorite composer is moza mozart. he wants the church to be for all, not a few. >> thanks. there is more news tonight from tehran after ann curry's exclusive interview with the new president of iran. she is the first western journalist to have access to hassan rouhani. the reaction continues today concerning what he said about nuclear weapons. in a moment some of the reaction. first tonight ann has more from tehran on what happens when he comes to the u.n. next week. good evening. >> reporter: good evening to you. the strong statements from iran's new president that he would never build a nuclear weapon and has full authority to negotiate a deal has sparked
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growing anticipation, especially here in iran about what might happen when he egos beyond the united nations next week. are you willing to meet with president obama in new york at the united nations? >> translator: i do not have any plan to meet president obama in our agenda. >> reporter: would you be against meeting with president obama in the near future, mr. president? >> translator: well, anything is possible in the world of politics. it depends on the necessary conditions. >> reporter: mr. president, president obama has revealed that you and he have exchanged letters. could you please describe the tone of those letters? >> translator: he congratulated my election and some issues of his interest raised in the letter. i i responded to that letter. i thanked him. i expressed iran's viewpoint.
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from my point of view the tone of the letter was positive and constructive. >> reporter: do you see it as a foundation? >> it could be subtle and tiny steps for a very important future. >> reporter: president rouhani was careful when asked about iran's recent past. much of what americans think about iran is influenced by your predecessor and statements he's made. let me ask you -- president ahmadinejad said the holocaust is a myth. do you agree? >> translator: i'm not a historian. i'm a politician. what is important for us is that the countries of the region and the people of the world grow closer to each other and that they are able to prevent aggression and injustice. >> reporter: if i might ask you one more time, do you want to e decry those statements?
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>> translator: we are not seeking and looking for war with any nation. we are seeking peace and stability among all nations in the region. >> reporter: president rouhani went so far to say if americans have political will re solving the political issue could be simple and settled in a, quote, short period of time. brian? >> ann curry from the tehran again tonight. thanks. there is much more of ann's reporting including her journey within iran. we have put it on the website tonight, nbcnightlynews.com. now to the reaction from washington and around the world. our chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell at her post at the state department again tonight. good evening. >> reporter: good evening, brian. based in part on those comments to ann curry, u.s. officials are eager to test the new president of iran's seriousness, possibly as early as next week in new york when both leaders will be at the united nations. president obama and rouhani have broken the ice with a warm exchange of letters mr. obama
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initiated. as headlines from around the world noted his comments to ann curry disavowing a nuclear threat. there was a clear change in tone from iran. is it a positive sign coming in this interview? >> the comments have been positive. but everything needs to be put to the test. we'll see where we go and at the right moment i think the white house and state department will make it clear where we are heading. >> reporter: though iran usually blocks iranians from twitter now rouhani is tweeting pictures of him with ann, even retweeting a picture of a prominent human rights lawyer his government released along with political prisoners wednesday. zarif returned to the u.n. today where he's known well from years as iran's u.n. ambassador.
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>> the president used a lot of sugar coated words. he did so deliberately in order to deceive. we don't need words. we need actions. we need them to stop their nuclear program. >> reporter: british officials say they are cautiously optimistic. france's president hollande will meet with him next week. andrea mitchell at the state department tonight. thanks. now to a number in the news tonight. one in seven americans re-elis on food stamps. there is an intense fight under way over how much taxpayer money should keep going to this longstanding part of what's called the safety net. tonight the house of representatives approved deep cutses to the food stamp program though democrats vow t block them. as part of the series reports on poverty called in plain sight we goat get the story from john yang in chicago.
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>> reporter: every thursday audrey goes to a church food pantry on chicago's south side to restock her pantry at home. >> how long will this last? >> about a week. >> reporter: a single mom, she sometimes skips meals so her 4-year-old son has enough to eat. she earn s $10 an hour as a part-time home health care worker and gets $151 a month in food stamps. >> i'm making it. i'm fine. >> reporter: with a little help. >> with a little help. >> reporter: she's part of a troubling trend. working families who rely on food stamps. since 2000, the number of households with earnings getting food stamps has more than tripled. in 2011 reaching nearly 6.4 million. critics say the program, known as snap has gotten too big and too expensive. they want to restrict the program's eligility, cutting about 4 million people from the roles. when unemployment declines the
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number of food stamp recipients still increase s. >> reporter: defenders say it's big because the need is big. >> the program has grown. we have we had the most severe economic downturn since the depression. >> reporter: for sara moore, a three-time cancer survivor, food stamps mean she can afford fresh fruits and vegetables. >> i wouldn't starve to death but i would be in trouble. >> reporter: pastor sandra gillespie can't imagine if the program is reduced. >> if snap benefits are cut, our numbers will go through the roof. i don't know if we'll be able to meet the need. >> reporter: as millions of americans could find out harder to put food on the table. still ahead for us tonight, desperation while on vacation. tens of thousands of people trapped with no way to get home. powerless as a resort city takes a big hit. later, caroline kennedy's words about her father and carrying on the torch that's now been passed
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an increasingly desperate situation in acapulco, mexico. a storm knocked out power, trapped tens of thousands of tourists. the u.s. embassy in mexico city has no hard numbers on how many americans are in acapulco there are reports hundreds of u.s. tourists are stranded. we get our report tonight from nbc's stephanie gosk. >> reporter: mexico is drowning after a double blow. two tropical storms slammed into opposite coasts. torrential rain for days caused the worst flooding in years. facing danger residents used every means necessary to get to safety -- from jet skis to zip lines, parents carrying children. 80 have died and hundreds are missing. acapulco was hit the worst.
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when the water s rose the vacation hot spot was cut off. >> the main highway, the only highway from acapulco to mexico city and the rest of the country has been destroyed by landslides. >> reporter: the acapulco airport is submerged. the international ticket counter abandoned in waist-deep water. even dry land can be dangerous. multiple angry displaced crocodiles have been caught roaming the streets. tens of thousands of tourists are still stranded. military planes shuttle people out but flights are infrequent. some wait hours, hoping to get a seat. this british school teacher was lucky. >> everything was wet and damp. it just rained and rained. the amount of debris that washed up on the beach -- palm trees, objects, a dead horse, a dead armadillo. >> reporter: supplies are running low. food, fresh water and medicine is only trickling in and looting has begun. to the east this the hills the
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danger isn't rising water. it's mud slides. entire hillsides collapsed. more than 50 people are missing in one rural town alone. even for the rainy season this string of tropical storms took mexico by surprise. a vacation paradise now reeling from a natural disaster. stephanie gosk, nbc news, new york. coming up tonight, remembering a great champion of the past. flu i got this. [thinking] is it that time? the son picks up the check? [thinking] i'm still working. he's retired. i hope he's saving. i hope he saved enough. who matters most to you says the most about you. at massmutual we're owned by our policyowners, and they matter most to us. whether you're just starting your 401(k) or you are ready for retirement, we'll help you get there.
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tv. nfl fans know his son as a coach for the seahawks. ken's health declined after strokes. he was 70 years old. word from japan that hiroshi yamauchi has died. he made nintendo a brand. it was a playing card brand before mario brothers and donkey kong and wii. he was 85 years old. our company was in the news today. the west coast entertainment division of nbc universal is delivering a miniseries based on one of the guys who built this place -- johnny carson. they are working with his biographer and the guessing game has begun as to who to i play johnny. the early favorites are ed harris, greg kinnear and kevin spacey who has an uncanny impression. finally if you believe a
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camera can be mounted to the head of an eagle there is a chance you saw this video from france where they swear this is real. as this week's web video s go, however, this is still king. jonathan -- hello -- viear sliding into second and taking the time to get to know brandon phillips of the reds. can't watch it enough really. when we come back the daughter of a u.s. president talks about camel camelot. ♪ [ male announcer ] 1.21 gigawatts. today, that's easy. ge is revolutionizing power. supercharging turbines with advanced hardware and innovative software. using data predictively to help power entire cities. so the turbines of today... will power us all... into the future. ♪
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finally tonight a famous daughter of a famous u.s. president went before congress uh today. caroline kennedy nominated as u.s. ambassador to japan, speaking today about her father and carrying on the family torch. we get the story tonight from nbc's harry smith. >> reporter: as senate hearings go, this one was anything but ordinary. >> i appreciate the confidence that president obama and secretary kerry have shown in nominating me . >> reporter: caroline kennedy appeared before the foreign relations committee today to offer her qualifications to become united states ambassador to japan. >> i can think of no greater honor than to represent my country abroad. >> reporter: she was a little
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girl when her parents moved into the white house. the images of those days represent a more innocent time in our country. 50 years ago this fall her father was assassinated. her family, including teddy's widow was nearby this morning as she spoke. >> this has a special significance as we commemorate the 50th anniversary of my father's presidency. i'm conscious of my responsibility to uphold the ideals he represented. a deep commitment to public service, a more just america and a more peaceful world. >> reporter: history and legacy were more important this morning than party or partisanship. the daughter of a president said she wanted to fulfill her father's wish. >> as a world war ii veteran who served in the pacific he hoped to be the first sitting president to make a state visit to japan. if confirmed as ambassador i would be humbled to carry forward his legacy in a small way and represent the powerful bonds that unite our democratic
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societies. >> reporter: her father would have been proud. harry smith, nbc news, new york. >> that is our broadcast on a thursday night. thank you for being here with us. i'm brian williams. we hope to see you right back here tomorrow evening. good night. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com

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